I’ve returned safely to Oklahoma from Anaheim, California and the EduComm07/InfoComm07 experience. Whenever I return from a conference, it is challenging to both publish podcast audio recordings from sessions and also digitize the notes I scribbled during the conference from time to time on pieces of paper, when my laptop was not open or available. I’ve uploaded all my pictures from the conference to a Flickr set, and I’ll briefly share a few images and thoughts.

Highlight number one was definitely getting to listen to Alan Kay’s keynote address on Tuesday, and seeing a working protype of the $100 laptop being manufactured through the One Laptop Per Child (OLPC) nonprofit.

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It’s amazing to see that after publishing the audio recording of Alan’s keynote Tuesday night, as of this evening (Thursday night, 2 days later) it has been downloaded 1155 times. Wow! I don’t know what the EduComm total attendance was, but I don’t think it was that big. How cool that podcasting and read/write web technologies are enabling so many more people to have almost real-time access to ideas and thoughts being shared from a conference like this. That is great and powerful, but Alan’s ideas were even more extraordinary. I really do commend his keynote address to you, it was challenging, thought-provoking and inspirational.

Another highlight of the conference for me was getting to have lunch and finally “meet in person” two of our other AT&T education advocates in California, Linda Woods and Beth Kerrick.

Linda Woods, Wesley Fryer, and Beth Kerrick

Linda is based in southern California as is Beth, but Beth works mainly in the Los Angeles area. You can see all the AT&T California education advocates and their regions on this clickable map, which is part of the AT&T Knowledge Network Explorer website. Linda Woods is primarily responsible for keeping KNE up to date. Both Linda and Beth provide free professional development for teachers and schools, so if you live in California please contact your regional advocate if you’re looking for teacher training. BTW, I noticed this evening on the KNE staff development website a link for free summer training on web 2.0 skills– the California Library Association has put together a curriculum of activities which looks to be expanded and extended from the Spring. Check that out, and if you haven’t sign up for the free Blue Web’N Yahoo Group.

In addition to the wonderful people I met and visited with at EduComm, the vendor hall of InfoComm certainly was a highlight. An overwhelming highlight, perhaps, but none-the-less a highlight. What really caught my eye more than anything were these projectors that looked like canons, I think there were about 5 of them all in a line.

These projectors look like canons!

Each one of them could be precisely aligned to the one next to it, using this special light grid image:

Lining up the projectors

Look at this amazing combination of images they created, which looked like a continous image of the stars over a planet, as seen from space:

Now that is widescreen! (about 5 projectors combined)

This makes me think of light paper, or electronic paper, which is predicted by some to (in the future) be so inexpensive people will be able to wallpaper rooms with it. I have no idea how much those projectors at Infocomm cost, but I’m sure the number was huge. The sheer number of plasma flatscreens and digital projectors in that convention hall was overwhelming!

I’ve never seen so much multimedia in one place in my life.

There was an entire “Technologies for Worship” pavilion:

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Was this equipment for worship or for a rock concert? There seemed to be no difference, except for the title on the banner over the stage.

There’s lots more to write and share, but I’ll close for now. If you have a chance to attend EduComm/InfoComm next year, be prepared for an assault on the visual senses when you go into the vendor area. I’m sure what I saw this year will be less than what we’ll see next year and in the years to come, in terms of multimedia-intense technology. Next year the conference is in Las Vegas!

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2 Responses to Highlights from EduComm07 and Anaheim

  1. Susan Hurst says:

    I followed your link to the California Library Association site and have started working through the activities. Even though I am not a Californian or a librarian (I am a fellow Edmondite and music teacher in the OKC public schools) this curriculum is a fun, structured way to explore some of the new technology available out there.

    I have been an avid blog reader (and lurker) for several years, but this has encouraged me to join the blogosphere for my own reflection and growth.

    Thanks for the info. I enjoy reading your posts and always come away with something new to try or think about.

  2. Wesley Fryer says:

    Susan: I’m so glad to virtually “meet” you and learn both about your web 2.0 explorations/blogging and that you’re an OKC teacher! I just had my first opportunity a couple of weeks ago to meet some teachers and instructional technology support staff in OKC public schools at the district “technology enhancement day.” Keep up the great learning, it’s amazing how much there is to learn “out there” today! 🙂

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